Dallas, Allison and their son Dawson were looking forward to adding to their family. During her pregnancy, Allison was diagnosed with gestational diabetes and on August 30, 2013, doctors noticed that the baby’s heart was extremely enlarged. Allison saw a specialist in early September and learned Brendan would be born with a serious heart defect. Allison and Dallas were given the options of delivering in Edmonton and awaiting transplant, or staying in Winnipeg and choosing to take no action. The family decided to fight for Brendan. The Variety Children’s Charity organized transportation for Dallas and Allison to Edmonton.
Following many scans and tests, doctors decided to perform balloon dilation on Brendan’s heart after he was born in hopes of better sustaining his heart until a transplant was found. On September 17, Brendan was born at the Royal Alexandra Hospital and was transferred to the Stollery Children’s Hospital. His condition was more dire than anticipated and Brendan was intubated immediately. The balloon dilation was performed, but it did not have the effect that the team had hoped for. Brendan was placed on the waiting list for heart transplant a few days later.
Dawson came to Edmonton for Thanksgiving and to meet his baby brother. Though he didn’t fully understand the gravity of Brendan’s circumstance, he understood that his baby brother needed his love and support.
Brendan was on an array of medications and they started to affect his liver. He was on and off the transplant list for two weeks, which was an emotional roller coaster for his family. His kidneys started showing signs of distress and they failed. At this point, having had only 10 weeks with their baby boy, the Moman family made a decision that no parent should ever have to make. They decided to end his suffering and remove him from life support. Brendan passed away on November 26, 2013.
The family’s two-week stay at RMHCNA introduced them to several families who provided love and support as they said their goodbyes to Brendan. One of the moms drove them to RMHCNA after Brendan’s passing. It had been a drizzly, grey day. They pulled up to the House and saw a vivid rainbow in the sky.
They felt it was a sign of peace from Brendan and have instilled a love for rainbows in Brendan’s big brother Dawson who says, “Whenever we see a rainbow, we remember and talk about Brendan.” Allison shares, “Brendan gave me the gift of appreciation for life and time, and a reminder to not take things for granted. He taught me that even the shortest of lives can yield the greatest of loves. I just want him to be remembered.”